THE WHITE HOUSE
Office of the Press Secretary
PRESS BRIEFING BY DEE DEE MYERS
The Briefing Room
1:54 P.M. EST
MS. MYERS: Let's start with a few housekeeping matters. Travel announcements in effect: For Budapest, which we talked about a little bit this morning, as I said earlier, there will be no press plane. However, the good graces of this very generous White House has arranged for those of you who signed up on the original sign-up list, we will provide transportation via either Air Force One or the back-up plane. For those of you who did not sign up on the original sign-up list and if you have any interest in going, you have to provide your own transportation. We are completely booked and we can't fit anybody else in.
The other issue was a filing center. There will be a filing center in Budapest at the Helias Hotel, which will be staffed comparable to most overseas trips. The sign-up -- we'll post a signup sheet today for work space in the White House filing center, for phones in the filing center. And for those of you who might be interested in rooms at the hotel, we can help you with that as well. I understand hotel space is very limited.
Finally, you need to sign up by no later than noon tomorrow, Wednesday, if you're interested in work space, phones. And the final issue is credentials. If you haven't already submitted an application you can do so by noon tomorrow, and we can help you with it. If you don't get that paperwork to us you'll be on your own and have to work through CSCE. So not to miss it.
Q No hotel rooms for those on the --
MS. MYERS: For those on the -- if you wanted one I'm sure we would do our best to arrange it, but I don't think that's necessary. And that's it.
Q Why is the President going to Arkansas this weekend?
MS. MYERS: We haven't announced any Arkansas trip. (Laughter.) I have nothing to say on that issue.
Q How's GATT looking, Dee Dee?
MS. MYERS: GATT is looking good. As you know, the House vote will be later today. The President met this morning with a group of about 75 House members, most of them undecided; some of them were yes or leaning yes. That included some of the membership of the leadership, which somebody asked about earlier today -- Bill Richardson and Barbara Kennelly were both there. All the leaders who support GATT in the House were invited. It was bipartisan. And I think the House looks very good. We'll continue to work on House votes today.
The President, as you know, is meeting with people -- making phone calls. He will meet with a comparable group of undecided, leaning-yes Senate members on Thursday morning. He'll continue to make phone calls and to hold meetings as is necessary.
Q Dee Dee, what kind of meetings has the President had on Bosnia, and what decisions has he made, and how is he having his decisions carried forward on it?
MS. MYERS: Well, as you know, the principals met yesterday to discuss Bosnia. The President, of course, was briefed on the results and recommendations of that meeting. I wouldn't look for any policy pronouncements per se. I think generally the results of the meetings -- certainly the President agrees -- is to carry forward with U.S. engagement in Bosnia, to continue to do what we can to keep the violence down there, to stop the bloodshed, the provide humanitarian assistance -- our policy to remain engaged as we have been. And I would just point out that it's certainly not our policy to suggest that we would not use NATO air force in the future. Air power remains on the table, contrary to some press reports today, although it has not been used extensively in Bihac.
Q? Is there a possibility of an arms embargo, and are you not enforcing the provision that you announced before that you would no longer enforce?
MS. MYERS: Yes, there's been no change in that. I mean, generally, our position on an arms embargo is the same. And that is that we are no longer enforcing the arms embargo, although we are complying with it. We do not support, and have not supported, unilaterally lifting the arms embargo. We would support under some circumstances a multilateral lift.
As you know, there is a U.S.-sponsored resolution on the table at the U.N., but it is not something that we're pursuing or talking about at this point.
Q Why hasn't arms air power been used when the Serbs broke through the safe areas?
MS. MYERS: Well, as you know, quite some time ago we adopted a dual-key policy which required the approval of both the U.N. and NATO before air power was used. That was done specifically at the behest of our allies who have troops on the ground and believed that in order to best protect troops on the ground that the U.N. commanders on the ground had to have some authority over whether air force, air power should or should not be used.
We have been -- the United States has been perhaps the most robust supporter of air force, air power being used under a number of circumstances. It has been effective particularly in protecting the exclusion zone in Sarajevo. But we have a dual-key policy in effect, and when NATO's been called upon by the U.N., NATO has responded with force. The U.N., as you know, has not called for --
Q We have not put any pressure on the U.N., have we, at all?
MS. MYERS: Well, I think we've had -- I don't think there's any question about our policy, and our support is perhaps more robust than the other members. But we do have a policy that is a dual-key policy, that does require the approval of both the U.N. and of NATO before air power, air strikes are used.
Q Isn't there an irony of the peacekeepers protecting themselves there, really? I mean, what is their role?
MS. MYERS: Well, their role -- and I think on some levels has been effective and on some levels has not been effective -- their roles have been to try to mitigate the violence there, to try to keep it down; to keep the war from spreading, which they have helped to do clearly; and to provide humanitarian assistance, which they've clearly helped to do, saving countless thousands of lives, particularly in the harsh winter months which are approaching us now. I think we've been clearly less effective in the broader goal which is to reach a negotiated settlement. And I think, clearly, Secretary Christopher, who will go to Europe this week and on Friday will meet in Brussels with the Contact Group -- the objective there will be to reinvigorate the peace process.
MS. MYERS: How? Through a number of measures trying to, I think, for example, drive additional wedges between the Bosnian Serbs and their patrons in Belgrade, which we've had some effect at doing, and in continuing to impose upon them the importance of ending this; that this cannot be resolved on the battlefield, that it must be resolved at the negotiating table.
Q Are you saying that the U.S. will not support a Bosnian federation?
MS. MYERS: We have not supported a Bosnian federation.
Q You say you still won't?
MS. MYERS: We don't support it.
Q Excuse me -- a Serbian --
MS. MYERS: Yes. I didn't think I understood the question. Let me just continue on this for a second. That is not our position. We do not support a Serbian federation. The constitutional issues were left open, however, in the Contact Group plan, and those are issues that will have to be worked out by the parties.
We proposed a map on a sort of take-it-or-leave it basis. The other issues, the constitutional issues -- how a government will be formulated, how the police forces and things like that will be formulated -- we left open to be negotiated between the parties. That includes their relationships with neighboring states. That, again, is something -- our view is, at this point, the most important thing is to push for a negotiated settlement and one that recognizes that -- in which all parties recognize the territorial integrity of Bosnia-Hercegovina, which has always been at the heart of our policy.
Q But it is being settled on the ground. We already assumed it's a fait accompli.
MS. MYERS: No, that's not true. I think the situation in Bihac is clearly very difficult. And what Secretary Perry said yesterday -- and some on Sunday -- was that it's unlikely or difficult, or impossible to reverse some of the Serb gains, particularly Bihac, through air strikes. By no means did he concede that the situation is not -- we can't move forward from here. Certainly, the way to move forward from here is diplomatically, not militarily -- particularly if the arms embargo remains in force, the Bosnian government will not be able to reverse the territorial gains of the Serbs through military action.
Q Nothing that came out of the principals meeting has to be ratified or okayed or checked off by the President?
MS. MYERS: The President has been, again, briefed. I think there will be continuing discussions about the recommendations that came out of the principals meeting. I think a lot of the pieces will be discussed both at the ministerial level in Europe and by the President as time goes forward. So I again wouldn't -- I'd steer you away from looking for any big policy announcements, but as circumstances on the ground changes, obviously, we will continue to make adjustments in our policy.
The thrust now is to reinvigorate the peace process, because, again, it is our view that the only resolution to this is a negotiated settlement. The only real avenue to that right now is through the Contact Group. The Contact Group remains intact. There have been some problems, but by and large the U.S., the Europeans and the Russians have agreed on an approach and we need to continue to move forward in that approach.
Q Are you saying no new carrots are being held out to the Serbs after this meeting, that the U.S. has agreed -- on any of the suggestions that perhaps others in the government are suggesting the U.S. making?
MS. MYERS: I think there are a lot of things being discussed. I don't think it's appropriate to get into that. And those things will be continued to be discussed with our allies, and particularly when Secretary Christopher meets with the Contact Group this week. There are a number of things being discussed.
Q Two questions. First of all, if we're going to try to drive additional wedges between the Serbs in Bosnia and the Serbs in Serbia, I thought the Contact Group was now talking about lifting sanctions on Serbia.
MS. MYERS: That is in response to -- as you know, we suspended sanctions for 100 days because Belgrade made commitments to seal the border and stop shipping supplies over the border to the Bosnian Serbs. That lifting or that suspension of those sanctions is up for review in January. It was a 100-day suspension. But that wasn't -- we didn't do that because we were taking them at face value, we did it because we had reason to believe that they were, in fact, sealing the borders. Now, there has been a lot of leakage -- I don't want to suggest that it's perfect -- and we will review it and do expect that they keep that commitment if we're going to continue to suspend sanctions. But that's the kind of thing I'm talking about.
Q Do you have a -- but what are the additional wedges that you have in mind?
MS. MYERS: Well, I don't think it's appropriate for me to get into the specifics, but --
Q Okay. And my second question -- how much is the meeting on Monday in Budapest driving this?
MS. MYERS: Well, I think a number of things are driving it. I don't think any one thing in exclusion of others. You have a series of ministerials -- Secretary Christopher is meeting with NATO, with the NACC, with the Contact Group this week, so there's those meetings going on. There's obviously the situation on the ground which is forcing us to relook at some of these policies. And there's President Clinton's trip to CSCE on Monday which, as you know, is focused actually on a couple of other issues, and I think will be
important sort of in terms of denuclearization and in terms of European security more generally, but surely Bosnia will come up.
Q But was the need to preserve unity within NATO more important than saving Bosnia?
MS. MYERS: Well, the need to preserve unity within NATO is always important. And I would just point out that what we're seeing right now is a Bosnian crisis, not a NATO crisis. I mean, there have been some differences among the NATO partners about how to approach the situation in Bosnia; there's no question about that. But I think that the fundamental integrity of NATO itself, the strength of that alliance is in no jeopardy. It is as strong as ever. It is the principal security apparatus for protecting Europe. It is vitally important to both the United States and to our European counterparts.
Q Who is it protecting against? It has shown its impotency in the case of a besieged town in Bosnia.
MS. MYERS: Again, this is -- we made a decision very early on that we would not send massive ground troops into Bosnia.
Q I'm not talking about ground troops, I'm talking about air power, NATO.
MS. MYERS: This, again, this is an issue about Bosnia. There are differences about Bosnia which I just went through. This is a Bosnian crisis, not a NATO crisis. The alliance remains sound, and I think we're very confident of that.
Q What did you mean Dee Dee, when you said this war can't be considered over on the ground? Do you mean to suggest there is any possibility that the Muslims could regain any territory militarily?
MS. MYERS: No, I don't want to get into this sort of handicapping. What I mean is that NATO would -- certainly stands ready to use air strikes in the future -- for example, to protect exclusions zones, particularly Sarajevo, things like that. I just wouldn't take that off the table. And I think the larger point is that this is not -- the only permanent solution to this crisis is through negotiated settlement. It is in the interest of all the parties, including the Bosnian Serbs, who I don't think want to live outside of the international community. I think they want to be recognized and resolve this conflict just as badly as the Bosnian Muslims, as both sides are losing too many people; too much blood has been spilled.
Q Well, they haven't shown that kind of indication. They have not accepted any of the peace plans.
MS. MYERS: We're going to continue to pursue that because we believe it's the only avenue toward a resolution to this crisis. It's not easy. I don't mean to suggest that there's some magic solution to this, but at the same time, we've ruled out the introduction of ground troops; we've ruled out unilaterally lifting the arms embargo. The only avenue that is both open to us and viable is a negotiated settlement. And we will continue to pursue it. We will remain engaged to the level that we can within the parameters that we've already outlined.
Q Dee Dee, on these 400 U.N. peacekeepers that are being held by the Bosnian Serbs -- by what means do we proceed in obtaining their freedom at this point? Through negotiations with the Bosnian Serbs? Through action in concert with our allies?
MS. MYERS: I think, through -- I mean, we're certainly continuing to urge them -- to make it very clear that they better not do anything more. I think there's some uncertainty about exactly what the situation is on the ground, and I don't have an update for you in the last couple of hours. I'm sorry. So I'm not sure if there's been any more clarity. I think there has been some misunderstanding, and clearly the situation is at least a little bit problematic. But we'll continue to press for their safe release, and we'll continue to try to provide humanitarian supplies to them.
Q Are you being advised of additional seizures of these folks, or releases or anything like that?
MS. MYERS: Not that I know of.
Q Do you have any comment on Saudi Arabia's willingness to arm the Bosnian Muslims?
MS. MYERS: Well, there is an embargo in place that we are no longer enforcing, but that we are abiding by, and I think that absent a broader lifting of that embargo, we will continue to support the embargo.
Q Will you try to stop them from supplying the Bosnians?
MS. MYERS: I'll have to take it on a diplomatic level. On a military level we're no longer using -- U.S. ships are no longer participating in enforcing the embargo. So the answer on a technical, physical level is no.
Q You spoke about the United States being a robust supporter of air power. Will the President continue to allow American pilots to risk their lives for pinpoint or pin-prick raids, like putting a hole in the runway, as was done a couple of weeks ago?
MS. MYERS: We obviously will continue to participate in NATO, and, working with the U.N., NATO will determine what the best targets are, and U.S. pilots -- certainly, American pilots will certainly participate in NATO through the policy that's currently in place. That is the dual key agreement to use air strikes when it's viable, when it's deemed appropriate. So the answer is yes.
Q In that case, the United Nations designed the air raid to save the lives of Serbs on the ground and potentially put American pilots at risk. Will you continue to do that?
MS. MYERS: As you know, the U.N. there is not under Article VI, does not take sides in this, and we've always said that any -- for example, any weapons that were found in the exclusion zone would be subject to air strikes regardless of whose weapons they were. I think we will continue to enforce those policies and U.S. pilots will continue to participate in NATO actions.
Q Can you tell us a little bit about this series of meetings the President seems to be having with members of Congress, what they're about, who's going to which meeting and how many more we should expect?
MS. MYERS: I think the meetings you're most likely talking about -- there have been a series of meetings, there have actually been three, all concluded now, with defeated Democrats in the House. And basically -- and I think all of those who won't be returning in January were invited to one of the three meetings. I don't know if all of them accepted. Obviously, most of them are in town for the GATT vote. And it's just a chance for them to talk about the future -- about the elections, more generally, and about
the future, about how they see the Congress and the party moving forward.
Q When will this be?
MS. MYERS: There was one yesterday and two today, two earlier today.
Q In the Residence, in the Oval?
MS. MYERS: You know, I'm not sure where they were, actually.
Q These were all with the President?
MS. MYERS: In the Residence.
Q Have any undecided votes from the House come here today to be lobbied by the President?
MS. MYERS: On GATT?
Q On GATT.
MS. MYERS: I don't think so. I'll double-check, though, but I don't think so, other than in the morning session.
Q Not on individual --
MS. MYERS: Yes.
Q Congressman Rostenkowski was here for about an hour. Did he have a solo session with Clinton, or was he involved in one of the group meetings?
MS. MYERS: He was invited to one of the group meetings, and whether or not he stayed afterwards and chatted with the President or with somebody else here in the White House I'm not sure. But I can certainly take that.
Q Did he offer him a job?
Q Does the President believe, Dee Dee, that the successful cooperation with the Republicans on GATT is a precedent for future cooperation on other issues, or is this an aberration?
MS. MYERS: Well, no -- I mean, after the elections, the President and others said that the vote on GATT will be the first test of new Republican leadership, of their seriousness, of their willingness to step forward to assume the responsibility of leadership and done what they have always believed and two previous Republican administrations believed was in the best interest of the country.
I think both the Speaker-in-waiting, Mr. Gingrich, and Senator Dole have worked -- certainly, Mr. Gingrich has sent a letter to all of his Republican colleagues urging them to support GATT last week. Senator Dole said he also supported GATT and would work to secure its passage. So I think those are clearly encouraging signs.
GATT is important and, as you know, the President felt very strongly that it should be passed this year, and I think that -- I think we're confident that will happen. We're still working on the Senate, but I think by the time the vote comes up Thursday, we will have the votes we need on both the budget waiver and the bill itself. And so I think if we can look forward to more bipartisan cooperation next year, that's certainly a good sign, and I think the
proof of the pudding will be in the eating, but we will suspend this belief.
Q Is the President going to go to Haiti before the end of the year, and if so, when?
MS. MYERS: It's not currently scheduled, but I wouldn't rule it out. In other words, there is no date set aside.
Q Wasn't it thought at one time he was going to go right around the time of the Summit of the Americas?
MS. MYERS: There were some proposals to have him go shortly after the summit, but none of that has been confirmed, and at this point there's nothing scheduled. The President has -- there is quite a busy schedule this month, including budget, CSCE, the Summit itself in Miami, and the President's calendar is very booked. Now, I think, as he said before, he'd like to do it, but at this point, nothing is scheduled.
Q If he could find time to go to Kuwait; why can't he find time to go to Haiti?
MS. MYERS: All I said so far -- one, he would like to; two, I'm not ruling it out, but at this point I can't give you a date because nothing is scheduled. I certainly wouldn't rule it out at some point, and if it doesn't happen before Christmas, I certainly wouldn't rule it out that it would happen sometime after Christmas.
Q Dee Dee, there was talk before Thanksgiving that the President was going to meet with the Republican -- the new leadership of both Houses. Other than in this kind of GATT format, has such a meeting been scheduled? Has he had any extensive conversations with Dole or Gingrich?
MS. MYERS: No meeting has been scheduled at this point. he has not had any extensive conversations with them along the nature that he plans to meet with them. But after the GATT vote is complete, he will meet the leaders from both the Democratic and Republican sides to discuss the coming agenda.
Q Does that mean Friday, or is that some future --
MS. MYERS: No, it could -- this is not scheduled yet, and I don't think it will be. I don't think we'll announce a date or hold a meeting until after GATT is done.
Q What's been holding it up? I mean, he said two weeks ago that he'd like to do it as soon as possible after --
MS MYERS: I think he would, but I think the focus since he got back from Jakarta and Manila has been on GATT, and I think most of the meeting have centered around GATT.
Q Is he waiting for them to adjourn to set it up?
Q Is he waiting for the leadership races to be completed?
MS. MYERS: That certainly would be helpful. I think that would be helpful in clarifying things both for Republicans and for the Democrats.
Q That will be done Friday.
MS. MYERS: That will be done with the exception of -- what's the Republican Senate election, or is it the Republican House on Monday?
MS. MYERS: Republican House is Monday. So, again, nothing is scheduled. I think it's probably unlikely that it will happen this week, although I wouldn't rule it out. And he will definitely do it at some point.
Q At one point this was taking on near summit proportions. Is this going to be formal or informal, and how large a group -- just strict, tight leadership or --
MS. MYERS: I think those are still open questions, and I think it's an open question whether he'll meet separately with Democrats and Republicans, or do it as both Republicans-Democrats together. He, as you know, had a practice of meeting fairly regularly with the bipartisan leaders, and then more regularly with Democratic leaders over the last two years. I think you can expect to see that. Certainly he'll sit down once just to sort of inaugurate the new leadership in the new Congress, and then proceed with a regular schedule of leadership meetings.
Q The Supreme Court today had arguments in the term limit case, and I wonder where the White House stands right now on term limits, especially on whether states can set term limits for members of Congress.
MS. MYERS: As you know, the Solicitor General is representing the government on the no side of that. The President's position has been that -- what he favors is campaign reform, political reform, as opposed to term limits. There are a lot of complicated issues involved in this case. We obviously have not taken a position specifically on the case, but on the broader question the President has said in the past that what he favors, again, is campaign finance and political reform.
Q Dee Dee, both the 200,000 Salvadorans in this country and close to 40,000 Guatemalans that are here on a temporary permit that was approved by President Bush in 1990, renewed by him once, and President Clinton has renewed it. The renewal is coming up December 31 so they can stay in this country and work. Do you know how the President is leaning on that?
MS. MYERS: I don't. You stumped the band; I will take the question. (Laughter.)
Q Do you have a readout of these congressional meetings that took place about with the defeated and departing Democrats and what --
MS. MYERS: Generally, they were scheduled again to talk about the elections and to get the members' thoughts on both where we are and where we should go from here. And I think they were each different depending on their personalities.
Q Normally, not much happens in January until the State of the Union address. Obviously, this January is going to be different with the Republicans planning a lot of things early in the month. Is there any thought given to giving an earlier State of the Union address? And if the answer is no, don't you risk looking like you're just following the Republican agenda?
MS. MYERS: Well, as you know, the date of the State of the Union is something that we negotiate with Congress or discuss
with them, and I think that we haven't resolved that question yet. And so I'll let the conversations go on between the members and the White House before we announce a date. I don't -- I'm not going to guess when it's going to be at this point.
Q But do you rule out an earlier one?
MS. MYERS: No, I wouldn't rule anything out. But I think -- just in terms of the broader question, certainly the White House and this President is not going to cede leadership on issues that are important. And I think, regardless of when the State of the Union is, you can expect the President to take a robust -- that's a great word -- a robust leadership role in the Congress in the coming years.
Q Can you absolutely rule out a Haiti trip on either Christmas Eve or Christmas Day?
MS. MYERS: I think that's highly unlikely. But I can't totally rule it out, no. My proposal was we would go down on Christmas Eve overnight and then stay for Christmas Day. I don't think there would be any problem with that. (Laughter.)
Q Through New Year's. (Laughter.)
MS. MYERS: New Year's Eve. But that's okay; we'll come back Sunday night after the games, so -- (laughter.)
Q If I could follow up on George's question, what are the prospects of the President actually preparing and releasing his budget in January instead of February, perhaps in time for the State of the Union?
MS. MYERS: Well, as you know, the President's working on his budget now, and he will continue to do that. That will certainly be something he'll spend a good deal of time on throughout the month of December. He's already started. He's had his first meetings on that. Again, I think timing will depend on a number of factors, and I can't give you a timetable for when his budget will be ready.
Q Do you think that would be helpful?
MS. MYERS: Again, those are all questions that we're continuing to work through, and I think a lot of it will depend on what the Republicans do. We'll have to see. The President's going to meet with them, get a better sense of what their timetable is. Certainly, we know some of the things that they'll take on right away -- I think some of what we don't know yet, and a lot of the decisions that we make will depend on content of the budget and the decisions that are made in that process.
Q Dee Dee, in the budget coming up this year, will there be an effort to show a path toward a balanced budget by 2001, or 2002, or whatever the amendment calls for? Will you try to show a route to a balanced budget in this budget?
MS. MYERS: Well, I think, clearly, one of the President's objectives has been reducing the budget deficit. That's why we've seen $100 billion reduction; three declining deficits for the first time since who was President? Anybody, anybody.
MS. MYERS: Coolidge -- good. (Laughter.) And we'll continue to do that. Now, exactly how that's structured, again, we'll have to wait and see. But there's no question that this
President has made a very serious effort at deficit reduction. We had a $500 billion five-year plan, which has borne some very real fruit. And I think you can expect some continuation along that very fiscally-responsible path.
Q Over the weekend, Secretary Bentsen distanced himself from the Reich proposal. Last week the President said, conceptually, he found that attractive. Does he still hold that view, or does he --
MS. MYERS: Yes, I think the President's view is that almost everything will be on the table during these budget discussions. I think, certainly, the President is open to a lot of different ideas, and we're certainly not going to rule anything in or out until the President and agency and department heads and others have had a chance to sit down and consider all of the implications; and that's what the process is about.
Q The British today have announced they're excluding Sinn Fein from a Northern Ireland investment conference that Ron Brown's going to attend. I think it's on December 12th and 13th.
MS. MYERS: Yes, I've seen some reports of that, and I'll have to take it because I don't know if we were able to independently confirm it or not. We hadn't as of say 45 minutes ago.
Q I just wondered if you thought Sinn Fein should be allowed to attend the conference, and if that will affect Brown's decision to go.
MS. MYERS: I will take that question and see what we actually know, based on diplomatic channels later; or I think there's a discussion ongoing right now.
Q Dee Dee, a couple of the congressmen who came out of these meetings, notably Congressman Brooks, say that they told the President that what they called propagandist and conservative talk show hosts have been allowed to define the issues in the campaign. Does the President agree with that, and what, if anything, do you intend to do about it two years from now?
MS. MYERS: I think that there have been a number of periods where the President has made his views on that particular issue rather well known. I mean, I think clearly there is a -- there are some medium, media outlets, whatever you want to call them, where I think that propaganda has been sort of allowed at the expense of the facts. I don't think there's any question about that. I'm not sure that anything comparable exists at the other end of the political spectrum. And I think that that is a subject that scholars and political scientists and political operatives will certainly debate and look at it for years to come.
And I think that it had -- there's no question that it had an impact in some areas more than others. And, I mean, you can just -- it doesn't take very long to point to some media outlets where there's just been complete irresponsible, reckless attack on the truth.
Q Could you point to them?
MS. MYERS: Well, I think we all know who they are. And I'm not talk about the -- I mean, some of them are obvious. I mean, there's some that there are really out there that are just absolutely operating with reckless disregard for the truth. And I think that's unfortunate. And I think it's a phenomenon that all of us have to deal with in our current roles.
Q Well, is there, again -- the follow-up -- is there any strategy that you all have or are working on to deal with --
MS. MYERS: Well, I think we always try to get our side out. I think we could do a better job of that, and hopefully in the coming years we will. But I don't think that we have control of particular outlets to quite the extent that the other end of the political spectrum does. But I think that we certainly will not hoist the white flag. We will continue to work very hard to get the President's message out through all media outlets. I don't think there will be any retreat from that on any level. But I think that there will continue to be a drumbeat of irresponsible propaganda coming out of certain elements of the media. And it's none of you.
Q Are you talking about Rush Limbaugh?
MS. MYERS: Further right than that. I mean, sometimes, but -- all right. Thank you.
THE PRESS: Thank you.
END2:26 P.M. EST